August 16, 2011

Whole Wheat Orzo and Grilled Vegetable Salad

I am in a book club. Yes, it sounds nerdy, but I assure you, it's really fun. A bunch of cool chicks get together, talk about a good book, and eat and drink wine. I love to read but I really love to eat and drink wine, so this is a perfect excuse to do both. For each book club, everyone is asked to bring a dish. I am proud to say that even with a busy work schedule, I have taken a homemade dish to every book club for the past 2 years! It's usually something simple and easy but always delicious.

For our last book club we discussed "Room," by Emma Donoghue, which I highly recommend, and I took a yummy pasta salad: Whole Wheat Orzo and Grilled Veggies with Feta, Olives, and Herbs. It has been my favorite salad I've made this summer!
Whole Wheat Orzo and Grilled Vegetable Salad with Feta, Olives, and Herbs
1 cup whole wheat orzo, cooked
2 small zucchini (I also used some squash because my dad had some fresh from the garden)
1 large red bell pepper
olive oil, for brushing vegetables
Italian seasoning
 1 1/2 cup black olives, drained and cut in half
1/4 cup thinly sliced green onions
2 T chopped fresh basil
2 T chopped fresh oregano
1/2 to 1 cup Feta cheese, crumbled (I like a lot of feta!)

Dressing Ingredients:
1/4 cup olive oil
2 T red wine vinegar
1 T Dijon mustard
1/2 tsp. dried oregano

1. Cook orzo al dente. Drain and let cool while you prep other ingredients.
2. Cut the zucchini and red bell pepper lengthwise into fourths and remove seeds and stem from pepper.  Brush the vegetables on both sides with olive oil and sprinkle with dried herb mix.  Grill vegetables until they are cooked, but still slightly crisp, about 10-15 minutes. (I was short on time for this batch so I simply sauteed the veggies in a frying pan which is fine too.)
3. Thinly slice green onions, olives, and chop fresh herbs.  
4. Whisk together the olive oil, red wine vinegar, Dijon, and dried oregano for the dressing.
5. Cut the zucchini and pepper into bite-sized pieces and put into a plastic bowl large. Add about 1/3 of dressing and stir so all the vegetable pieces are coated with dressing. Let marinate. 
6. Add the cooked orzo, green onions, and herbs to the vegetables and add enough dressing to moisten all ingredients. Stir in the olives and crumbled feta and that's it! Serve chilled but not too cold.

I made my salad overnight and it kept great. Hurry and make it before summer is over and you miss out on all the beautiful squash and zucchini!

Happy Eating,


  1. That sounds awesome! I'm pretty much a sucker for anything with a mediterranean flare.

  2. It is awesome! I love mediterranean everything. You should make it sometime! Super easy! xo